Why This Conservative, Left Permanently Disabled in an Attempted Robbery, Rejected Government Assistance

Michael Tubbs, mayor of Stockton, California, proposed an experiment to give 100 residents $500 a month for 18 months in guaranteed income, funded by a private organization. The mayor believes the amount isn’t enough money to encourage people to stop working but might give them financial stability.

Will the experiment prove to be a handout or a handup?

It depends.

“Let’s put this in context,” Marc Little, Vice Chairman for the Center for Urban Renewal and Education (CURE), said on Fox News. “We are talking about a guaranteed income in the middle of a booming economy, where jobs are being created at a record pace. At CURE, we care about folks who are hurting and folks who need assistance. I was one of those people.”

A gang thug shot Little in an attempted armed robbery in 1987 and left him permanently disabled. But Little said he didn’t need a handout. He needed opportunity. The road to success is personal responsibility and self-reliance, he added, not a handout. After Little checked himself out of rehab, he worked two jobs and rejected government assistance.

Assistance is important, he said, but not when it becomes a handout. Basic-income programs were studied under former presidents. The findings? Watch the brief clip.

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